We recently asked Clifford Morgan, psychologist, consultant, and one of our very first accredited Decida Coaches, to share insights on better decision making.
Cliff is passionate about partnering with leaders and their organisations, helping them to unlock their potential and perform at their peak. A registered psychologist with over a decade of service with the Royal Australian Air Force, he brings a wealth of experience that provides him a unique perspective to assist his clients. His approach combines his military discipline and focus with the application of psychology in a way that challenges mindsets, influences culture and empowers people.
- What is your favourite, or most used, inspirational quote?
In between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space lies our ability to choose our response. In that choice lies our freedom. – Viktor Frankl.
- What does great decision making look and feel like for you?
For me I think values are the most underused tool when it comes to decision making. Values are like sign posts for decision making. They allow one to prioritise what is most important in life. The challenge most people have is that they haven’t taken the time to clearly articulate what their values are and therefore what is most important. If you can’t articulate what is most important to you, then you struggle to determine which decisions are most beneficial for you. When you can clearly articulate what your values are and what is most important in your life, you can align your decisions to ensure you head in the desired direction and end up where you want to go. The other tool that is just as valuable is my wife. She’s not afraid to tell me point blank if my decisions are poor ones.
- When was a time you were at your decision making best?
When I am leading a motivated and supportive team, where we have a clearly articulated vision and associated goals, with time for me to both think things through internally as well as discuss options openly before a final decision is made.
- Who inspires you? Why?
Many people inspire me in different ways and in different areas of my life. My Dad has always been a man of character and integrity and despite growing up below the poverty line, through hard work and education became a highly successful doctor. His driving motivation was that his children would have the opportunities he never had. I have a professional mentor who has been a member of the Royal Cavalry, been to two different Olympic Games in two different sports, almost died from Bird Flu and is now at the age of 60 competing internationally as a body builder. This is all in addition to being one of the best organisational psychologists in the country, sought after by CEOs and politicians alike. He inspires me to be more brilliant and push the boundaries of performance both personally and professionally. And then there are the numerous business owners around me who know the tough lonely grind and rollercoaster ride that is building a business. They inspire me to keep on going building my own, rather than going and getting a job.
- What advice would you give to someone wanting to be a better decision maker?
Take a leaf from Covey’s 7 Habits. Start with the end in mind. Know what you want to achieve and where you want to go. Create a vision statement for you life. Then take the time to clearly articulate what your values are, and consider what these values look like being outworked in you life. Ask yourself, “If this value is important to me, what will I do, what will I not do and what perspective will I take?” Another helpful question might be, “If someone was observing me, how would they know this is one of my values?” Once you have clearly defined and articulated your vision and values, you know where you want to go and how you want to get there. When if comes to decision making, you simply look at your options and consider which option best aligns with your vision and values.
- What are you reading/watching at the moment?
Captivate: The science of succeeding with people – by Vanessa Van Edwards
- What is the most effective strategy you use for keeping your Ape (your emotional reactive state) in check?
Take time out. Stop what you are doing and step away. Whether that is going for a run or just walking outside to get some sunshine and fresh air. Then before you step back into your work, think about the big picture. Remind yourself what you want to achieve long term, whats most important to you, decide what the next most beneficial thing to do is and then focus on that one task.
- What type of decision maker are you? Perfecting Activist
To connect with Clifford Morgan:
P: (07) 3311 3079